By Binebai Princewill
There seem to be growing tension in the Niger Delta region following the sack of indigenous workers from Ogulagha and Odimodi Communities in Burutu Local Government Area of Delta State.
The latest threat of oil disruption is contained in a statement issued to newsmen in Warri on Thursday by a group operating under the aegis of Eluwe Brotherhood (EB) of Odimodi and its federated communities in Iduwini Kingdom, Burutu Local Government Area of Delta State, signed by its national Spokesperson, Mr. Osuo Beniteme, a copy of which was sent to The Liberator Newspapers.
The Eluwe Brotherhood (EB) had particularly warned that the threat for oil disruption should not be treated with kids gloves as it will eventually happen if SPDC refuses to reinstate the alleged sacked workers from Ogulagha and Odimodi Communities.
Beniteme described the purported sack of the indigenous workers as not just an injustice but an evil taken too far, stressing that enough is enough as SPDC will not have peace if they fail to reinstate the embattled indigenous workers urgently.
Speaking among series of oppressive tendencies perpetuated by SPDC against their host communities, Mr. Osuo said the case of Odimodi becomes more peculiar as the only person working with the company as a contract staff was purportedly sacked in their latest decision.
The group called on President Muhammadu Buhari, Niger Delta leaders and the International Community to be aware of what host communities are passing through in the hands of SPDC, stating that if the region boils as a result of this and other pending issues, the people should not be held responsible as host communities in the Niger Delta have endured enough.
“We in a strong term condemned the recent decision taken by SHELL PETROLEUM DEVELOPMENT COMPANY OF NIGERIA (SPDC) to down-size Indigenous workers from SPDC OPERATING COMMUNITIES in the CREEKS of Delta State despite the fact that these communities have been marginalized and denied the opportunity of working for many years.
“SPDC is playing games with IJAW PIPELINE COMMUNITIES in DELTA STATE and does not have regards for indigenous workers.
“I am a Secondary School drop Out. I did not intend to work with SPDC. I can not fold my hands and watch SPDC sacking graduate who studied Engineering and other relevant courses especially from OGULAGHA AND ODIMODI COMMUNITIES and retaining others who are even less qualified cannot happen. You cannot bite the finger that feeds you. Dropping indigenous workers means you are no more interested in working with the area.
“SPDC WEST, prefers to downsized PIPELINE COMMUNITY workers and retain Non- Indigenous workers in her quest to favour employees from senior management brothers, sisters, inlaws and friends. While indigenous workers becomes escape goat. This act is evil and it must stop. You can not keep oppressing the opperessed. The Management of SPDC WEST NIGERIA has been fooling OGULAGHA AND ODIMODI LEADERS for a long time by given them fake promises.
“ENOUGH IS ENOUGH. The days of dropping INDIGENOUS workers are over. What we want now is more employment and not droping the few that are working as indirect staffs with you. DROPING A GRADUATE FROM A SPDC HOST COMMUNITY AND RETAINING SOMEONE FROM A NON- PIPELINE COMMUNITY IS AN INSULT…
“We want the world to know the numerous evils perpetrated by SPDC. The plan of SPDC to continously frustrate graduate from IJAW COMMUNITIES in DELTA STATE.
What SPDC MANAGEMENT has done is a clear indication that SPDC HATES Indigenous workers and never mean well for her Landlords.
“There is a sympathetic case in ODIMODI COMMUNITY where the only indigene who is a graduate in Engineering working with the Right of Way Surveillance team was dropped while leaving the rest who are not even from PIPELINE COMMUNITY to work. This is a day light oppression from SPDC challenging the will of the people”. The statement added.
The group demanded the following as conditions to abate the growing disruption of oil facilities in the 24 inch Trans-Ramos pipeline.
1. SPDC SHOULD MAKE A COMPREHENSIVE LIST OF ALL HER STAFFS. BOTH DIRECT AND INDIRECT LET THE WORLD KNOW HOW HOST COMMUNITIES HAVE BEEN MARGINALIZED.
2. SPDC SHOULD QUICKLY COMPLY WITH THE DEMANDS OF OGULAGHA AND ODIMODI COMMUNITIES BY RECALLING BACK ALL SACKED INDIGENOUS WORKERS.
IF THESE DEMANDS ARE NOT REACHED, THE FLOW OF CRUDE OIL IN THE 24 INCH TRANS-RAMOS PIPELINE FROM BRASS CREEK MANIFOLD TO FORCADOS TERMINAL WILL BE TERMINATED.
ALL PIPELINE ACTIVITIES EITHER REPAIR OR MAINTENANCE WORKS WILL BE DISRUPTED.
THIS IS NOT A THREAT BUT A POTENTIAL DANGER WAITING TO HAPPEN IF THE WILL OF THE HOST COMMUNITIES ARE NOT GRANTED.